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LAKE BIWA 100 is an authentic 100-mile race comparable to overseas 100 mile race in full-fledged mountains. The course runs through a technical and beautiful ridgeline of the 1,200m class mountains (e.g. Suzuka Mountains, Hira Mountains) in renowned mountainous areas in Kansai, which requires runners, not only running ability, but comprehensive ability to run through the mountains and risk management skill.

Runners can enjoy the mountains surrounding Lake Biwa, which offers various and exciting challenges, and beautiful scenery along the course. After going through rough mountainous area in Suzuka Mountains, runners enters Shiga Prefecture on the Tokai Nature Trail where runners can enjoy running in a relatively flat section, and proceeds to the mountainous area again. From the trail overlooking Lake Biwa, the runners proceed to famous Mt. Hiei Enryakuji Temple in Kyoto, head north while enjoying traditional buildings of Japan, and enter the rugged mountain range. After conquering this mountain area, the runner reaches the last aid station set at a shrine called Modoroki Shrine, where people pray for their safely return. The runners pray for finishing the race safely, and then faces the last challenge, climbing the long steep climb of the Hira mountain range to the ridgeline. From there, Lake Biwa, the largest lake in Japan, and the Suzuka Mountains located across the lake can be seen. Then, the runner go down a steep descent of 1000 meters to Lake Biwa, at once, runs along the lake shore, and finishes at a beach of Lake Biwa. Many runners enjoy Goal & Dive, where the runner dive into the lake celebrating their achievement. The Cut-off time is set for a relatively long time, but the course is challenging. Since completing this course itself is a big challenge, this race may be a first step for local runners aiming to enter oversea races. For runners from overseas, this is a unique opportunity where you can experience the beautiful nature of Japan, steep and challenging mountains, and Japanese cultures.

Distance 169km D+10,500m

IBUKI publishes and distributes GPX file. Please make sure to check the details of the route before the race and download the GPX file to your mobile phone and your GPS watch.
IBUKI event page (Each aid stations are plotted on this map.)
※ The distance and the elevation may be stated smaller than actual number because of its algorism.

①Start(Kibosou)0km~A1(Anraku Pass)27.2km  A1 Cut off time 11h(11- 20:10)

・The 9 km section from Buna Shimizu (5 km) to Iwakura Ridge Branch (14 km) is a special nature reserve of the quasi-national park and poles should not be used and runners are advised to go slow. This area is quite popular to hikers, so please walk when you passing each other.
Signs are placed at the beginning and end of this section, so please follow the signs.

・Make sure to pass the peak of Mt Gozaisho.

・Water aid station, vending machines and toilets are available at Mt. Gozaisho.

・Please place a high priority on giving a way to hikers around Mt Gozaisho.

・Support Crew can access to the water aid station at Mt. Gozaisho by the Gozaisho cable car

・Be careful especially after the ascent of Mt Kamagatake. There are many technical places (using chains or scrambling) to ascent and descend.

・Be prepared to use your head lights after Mt. Sengatake because it gets dark between Mt. Sengatake and Anraku Pass for the most of runners.

・Personal assistance or watching runners at A1 Anraku Pass is prohibited due to lack of parking space.

This is a rugged area, so watch out your steps and course markings!

at 5km point
at 14km point
Junction of Bunashimizu (Start point of slow down section)
The top of Mt. Kamagatake(The race route doesn’t pass the top, so if you want to see it, you have to go off the route for a couple of min.)
Mushroom Rocks

A1(Anraku Pass)27.2km~A2(Suzuka Pass)33.3km A2 Cut off time 14h(11- 23:10)

  • The steep climb immediately after the Anraku Pass is a rocky, narrow ridge and there is a risk of falling rocks. Keep a sufficient distance between you and the runner in front and behind you, and if you let a rock fall, shout loudly to inform the runners behind you.
  • Watch out the continuous narrow ridges after Mt. Shiosoyama. If you miss a step, there is a big risk of slipping and falling. Special attention and concentration is important.

The distance is short, but the section takes time. Don’t let your guard down just because the distance is short, and make sure you have plenty of drink.

A2(Suzuka Pass)33.3km~A3(Yono Park)46.2km A3 Cut off time 19h30(12- 4:40)

  • Pay extra attention due to technical sections with chains and ropes.
  • Run carefully on narrow ridges.
  • Drop bag and sleeping area is available at A3 (put a sleeping bag etc. in your own drop bag in case of you need to sleep).

It takes longer than you think, so keep your concentration and carry plenty of drink! Be careful of slipping and falling! Curry is available at A3 (not so spicy)

【Rope section between Mt. Nasugahara and Mt. Aburahidake】
Watch out falling rocks. Also, the use of ropes can be dangerous if several people hold onto the same rope, so keep a reasonable distance between them and tell the person following you when you have grabbed the next rope.

A3(Yono Park)46.2km~A4(Kinose Community Centre-Sarara)74.8km 
A4 Cut off time 24h30(12- 9:40)

  • Basically, runnable section with asphalt road, forest trails and small peaks following the signposts of the Tokai Shizen Hodo (Tokai Nature Trail).
  • Follow traffic rules and pay close attention to vehicles when crossing the driveways.
  • When passing through residential areas, take care not to disturb residents with noise like conversation, bear bells, etc..
  • There are four animal-proof gates, so staff is attending to open and close the gates for runners. However, if no staff is seen around the gates for some reasons, each runner has to close the gates properly after passing through.
  • The trail before Shigarakigushi station is quite damaged and there is big ditch, so try not to run in the ditch. There is footpaths on the side of the ditch.
  • Do not forget to exchange the IBUKI tracking device to a new one at A4!

This is a bit complicating route, so be careful not to get lost. This is runnable section! Oyako-don (Japanese style chicken and egg rice bowl) is waiting for you! Warm sleeping rooms are available.

A4(Kinose Community Centre-Sarara)74.8km~A5(Tanakamieda Park)97km
A5 Cut off time 28h30(12- 13:40)

  • Basically, runnable section with asphalt road, forest trails and small peaks following the signposts of the Tokai Shizen Hodo (Tokai Nature Trail).
  • Follow traffic rules and pay close attention to vehicles when crossing the driveways.
  • When passing through residential areas, take care not to disturb residents with noise like conversation, bear bells, etc..
  • Please be careful when you go down from Mt. Yahazudake. The route goes through wet rock area which is very slippery even on a sunny day.
  • Drop bag and sleeping area is available at A5 (put a sleeping bag etc. in your own drop bag in case of you need to sleep).
【Descend from Mt. Yahazudake】
This wet rocky area is very slippery!

This is also a runnable section! Tonjiru (Japanese style pork and vegetable miso soup) is available at A5!

A5(Tanakamieda Park)97km~W1(Nagara Park)113.9km 
W2 Cut off time 33h30(12- 18:40)

  • The 5km road section from Tanakamieda Park to the Ohirayama trailhead passes through villages, residential areas, parks and fields in a complex way, so make sure to check your GPS watch or mobile phone to navigate correctly.
  • Follow traffic rules and pay close attention to vehicles when crossing the driveways.
  • When passing through residential areas, take care not to disturb residents with noise like conversation, bear bells, etc..
  • The route from Mt Ohira to the descent of Mt Otowa is a series of ups and downs, but you can enjoy the view of Lake Biwa from between the trees.
  • W1 Nagara parc provides only drinks, Japanese sweets, Calorie-Mate blocks and gels. No hot food.

This section is harder than you expect with steep climbs. W1 is stated as a water aid, but Japanese sweets (Asuka Foods) and Calorie Mate and Jelly (Otsuka Pharmaceutical) are also provided!

W2(Nagara Park)113.9km~A6(Kitashirakawa School)125.8km
A6 Cut off time 37h30m(12- 22:40)

  • Do not ring the bear bell or talk loudly after descent of Mt Daimonji to A6 Kitashirakawa aid station and to the next trailhead especially at night and early morning because it’s residential area.
  • Mt. Daimonji is a popular mountain with many hikers during the day. Give priority to hikers, walk when passing or overtaking, and do not run through the side of them. Make sure the hikers are be aware of you coming by talking to them.
  • Follow traffic rules and pay close attention to vehicles when crossing the driveways.
  • A6 Kitashirakawa Primary School doesn’t have a car parking, so if you wish to support your runner, please use the nearby coin-operated parking and walk to the aid station. Street parking is strictly prohibited!
  • Keep quiet at night and early in the morning.
  • Support crew has to show the support crew bib to enter the aid station. Audiences doesn’t have any bibs must not enter the primary school grounds.

Every year some local hikers get rid of our course markings at Mt. Daimonji, so please check your GPS watch or offline map to navigate through. Special Udon (Japanese noodle) is provided at A6!

⑧A6(Kitashirakawa School)125.8km~A7(Modoroki Shrine)149.6km
A7 Cut off time 45h(13- 6:10)

  • The 1km from the bridge just before entering Enryakuji temple area to the next trailhead is a slow down zone (indicated by signposts on the course). Bear bells are also prohibited during this section.
  • The course of the Hira Hiei Trail (yellow marking tapes with Japanese writing on) and the LAKEBIWA100 is exactly the same from the Oogi Pass to A7 Modoroki Shrine
  • Drop bag and sleeping area is available (put a sleeping bag etc. in your own drop bag in case of you need to sleep) at A7.

Mt Hiei is also a popular mountain. In 2022 someone took the course markings off and put on the wrong places to miss-lead runners, so make sure to check your GPS watch or offline map. Carry enough water as this section is very time consuming. There will be water aid station at 18.3km from A6 but even getting there will take time. Many past runners call this section “the infinite loop”. Egg soup rice is waiting for you at A7!

⑨A7(Modoroki Shrine)149.6km~Goal(Hira Lake House)169km
Finish Cut off time 52h(13- 13:10)

The trail not permitted to enter before the race
The trail starting about 2 km after A7 Modoroki Shrine to Mt. Ryozen is not permitted to enter after May 1 2023 until the open announcement will be made due to the logging work. It may take few years to finish. On the race day we have permission to go through, but don’t touch any heavy vehicles parked around the area.

  • Towards Mt. Horai there are three peaks with steep climbs. Very tough section.
  • Lake Biwa from Mount Horai is a great view. You can see all the mountains you have run so far.
  • Be careful not to miss the entrance to the rugged descent before the Biwako Valley Ropeway on Mt. Uchimi after Mt.Horai.
  • After descending Mt. Uchimi, enjoy the last 5km run along the Lake Biwa shore road.
  • Ensure that the bear bell does not ring once you are on the asphalt rode.
  • Be quiet on the asphalt rode after descending from the last mountain and around finish line at night and early in the morning, although you are so excited to finish the race. We have to respect the residents around.

The last major climb is in three stages: Mt Ryosen, Mt Gongen and Mt Horai. It is very long and time-consuming, so make sure you have plenty of water. The descent is also very long, so buying drinks at the vending machines at Biwako Valley after Mt Horai is strongly recommended. Enjoy the spectacular view looking back from the mountain top and diving into Lake Biwa!

Restrictions

Slow sown area・Running poles prohibited area

Please go slow in the following area

  • Suzuka quasi-national park special reserved area: It will be marked on the course (approx. 5km point to 14km point from the start) ※except for the ASPHALT-PAVED ROAD and the ski slope
  • In the Mt. Hiei Enryakuji temple: It will be marked on the course ( approx. 134km point to 135km point from the start)

Please do not use poles in the following area

  • Suzuka quasi-national park special reserved area: It will be marked on the course (approx. 5km point to 14km point from the start) ※except for the ASPHALT-PAVED ROAD and the ski slope

Personal Assistance

Personal assistance is tolerated at the following posts:
W1,A3,A4,A5,A6
*A6 doesn’t have car parking. Please use coin parking nearby and do not park on the street.

Restrictions at aid stations

  • Only one support crew is allowed to enter each aid station and carrying bag should not exceed 40 litters.
  • Please be quiet at the aid stations in residential area at night.

Use of shops and vending machines on the course

Use of shops and vending machines on the course are allowed. If you go off the course to reach any shops and vending machines, you must go back to the point where you left the course.